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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics

    Video threat emerges amid security concerns over Sochi Winter Olympics


    A video surfaces threatening the Winter Olympics. Russia's President vows the Games will be safe. Some U.S. lawmakers warn that they won't be.



    One thing was clear as debate over the situation surged on Sunday: security is a top concern, less than three weeks away from the competition.

    "It's a very serious fear," Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, told CNN's State of the Union Sunday.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin acknowledged that the Games, like any high-profile event, could be a target for terrorists.

    But, he said, Russia has a "perfect understanding" of the threat and how to stop it.

    As a transcript of his interview with half a dozen national and international broadcasters was posted on the Kremlin website Sunday, a video that surfaced online again highlighted the security situation.

    In the video, posted on a well-known Jihadi forum website, two young men believed to have been suicide bombers in last month's back-to-back bombings in the Russian city of Volgograd speak of those attacks and make an ominous promise.

    "We've prepared a present for you and all tourists who'll come over," the video says. "If you will hold the Olympics, you'll get a present from us for the Muslim blood that's been spilled."

    In the video, the men are dressed in black and standing in front of a black banner with religious verse that is typically associated with al Qaeda-linked extremists.

    Last month's attacks in Volgograd, a major transit hub about 650 kilometers (400 miles) away from Sochi, sparked concerns over security as the Olympics approach.

    The explosions targeted a train station and a trolley bus and claimed the lives of more than 30 people.

    In addition to the Volgograd attacks, there has also been violence in recent days in the southern republic of Dagestan -- the latest unrest linked to a long-running Islamist insurgency in the North Caucasus region.

    Putin pledges stepped up security

    Putin has pledged that visitors to Sochi for the Winter Olympics will be kept safe.

    "We will try to make certain that the security measures are not intrusive or too conspicuous, so they are not too noticeable for the athletes, the Olympics' guests or journalists," Putin said, according to the interview transcript.

    "But at the same time, we will do our utmost to ensure that they are effective."

    Russia has plenty of experience in keeping international events secure, Putin said, pointing to the G8 and G20 summits as examples.

    "Security is to be ensured by some 40,000 law enforcement and special services officers," he said. "Of course, we will draw on the experience acquired during similar events held in other regions of the world and in other countries.

    It means that we will protect our air and sea space, as well as the mountain cluster."

    U.S. lawmakers: Games aren't safe

    But several U.S. lawmakers offered a different take Sunday on CNN's State of the Union.

    King, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he wouldn't go to the games himself, "and I don't think I would send my family."

    Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, also called on the Russian government to be more cooperative with the United States on intelligence sharing ahead of the games.

    "Their level of concern is great, but we don't seem to be getting all of the information we need to protect our athletes in the Games. I think this needs to change, and it should change soon," Rogers said.

    When asked whether he thought Americans would be safe at the Games, former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden said he trusts Russia's ability to provide security.

    "I think Americans will be quite safe," he said.
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  2. #2
    On Fire edhalen's Avatar
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    Default 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics

    I hope the games aren't tarnished by the morons out there.


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  3. #3
    Atomic Punk Raldo's Avatar
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    Looking forward to the Olympics!!

    It's neat to watch sporting events that you don't normally get to see on a regular basis.
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  4. #4
    Atomic Punk fast98dodge's Avatar
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    Women's Curling is my favorite event...
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  5. #5
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    I will be shocked if there isn't an attack on these games. At least everyone seems to be prepared for it this time around.

    As for the Olympics, I love them. There's nothing like watching the complete jubilation and heartbreak that the event can bring. You have to remember most of these guys and girls are working every day for 4 or more years to get to these games. Many of them sacrifice being with their family, their careers, their education, all of it just to get this chance. Even though we always have to be jaded with cheating, financial sponsors, and other shenanigans, the Olympic spirit is really what sports are all about.

    It's also one of the few times the residents of planet Earth takes a collective look at one spot and peacefully enjoy each others' company.
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  6. #6
    Atomic Punk atomicpunk5151's Avatar
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    I will pretty much only be watching the Hockey Tournament.

    ++++

    The rest of the stuff is pretty boring. I understand it is a big deal for these athletes, but I just don't care personally or have much interest.

    Back in the 80s I liked the Downhill skiing. I may watch some short track speed skating.

    My kids will be interested in the snowboarding if it is X-games half pipe style. I will be interested in how many get busted for smoking pot....haha...

    I do want to drink a few beers and watch Curling if there is a drinking game or something.

  7. #7
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicpunk5151 View Post
    I will pretty much only be watching the Hockey Tournament.

    ++++

    The rest of the stuff is pretty boring. I understand it is a big deal for these athletes, but I just don't care personally or have much interest.

    Back in the 80s I liked the Downhill skiing. I may watch some short track speed skating.

    My kids will be interested in the snowboarding if it is X-games half pipe style. I will be interested in how many get busted for smoking pot....haha...

    I do want to drink a few beers and watch Curling if there is a drinking game or something.
    Evety time the Canadians scream hurry you take a shot. . You'll be dead in no time

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk jimmy812's Avatar
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    Yeah, hockey is all I'm really interested in, but I'll check out random events at random times.

    Like bsbll said, I don't have a very good feeling about these Olympics going without some sort of terrorist attack. Hopefully we can trust Putin's word that his security will be strong and effective.
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  9. #9
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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    Wow. The Team USA uniforms worn during the opening ceremony are hideous.
    "What we are dealing with here, is a complete lack of respect for the law" - Jackie Gleason, Smokey and the Bandit

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  10. #10
    Sinner's Swing! Jesus H Christ's Avatar
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    Default Winter Olympics in Sochi

    Wealth of Issues Face 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Athletes, Fans and Journalists

    Welcome to the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, where the beds are small, the toilets don't accept toilet paper, the water is yellow and the stray dogs, well, their numbers are dwindling.

    As journalists, athletes and fans descend upon Sochi and Krasnaya Polyana, Russia, they are finding various issues that will make life for the next couple of weeks hilarious, treacherous or some small chasm in between.

    Deadspin's Tom Ley spotted some rather intriguing tidbits floating around the Internet that highlight how many of the athletes will live and sleep for the duration of the games.

    In the end, your hypothetical value motel along the highway comes loaded with far more amenities than the athletes' dormitories. The Canadian Press' Stephen Whyno shared the following image of three beds dedicated to members of the Canadian hockey team:



    To be fair, if your idea of a bedroom is a room with beds, Olympic officials are knocking this out of the park. And let's be honest, small beds are sort of a theme for bigger athletes at the Olympics anyway.

    Fortunately, we live in an age when videos afford us a closer look, and that's what we get thanks to Pavel Lysenkov, NHL editor for Russia's Sovietsky Sport:


    As Lysenkov's video shows, the rooms are, for the most part, bare; there doesn't seem to be any television sets and the one bathroom is quite small. The athlete dorms are very much like what many of you might imagine of your own college dormitory.

    This is hardly the only issue facing the greater Sochi area at the moment, however.

    We might as well get the disgusting out of the way early. Yahoo! Sports' Greg Wyshynski is dealing with this on trips to the lavatory:



    Some of you want a free breakfast or Wi-Fi amid your hotel amenities. Instead, you should just be grateful that the toilets in your room or around town actually accept toilet paper.

    Thankfully, there are no reports of journalists being told the bathroom was an outhouse or merely given a roll of toilet paper and told just to dig a hole in the woods.

    Once you enjoy a good night's sleep in a tiny bed, stare at a blank wall for entertainment and relieve yourself in the restroom, all the while hoping it wouldn't reject some of its contents like a stubborn porcelain bouncer outside a club, you need to take a shower.

    The National Post's Bruce Arthur, writing for Canada.com, brings a wealth of issues facing Olympic denizens to light:

    Sochi? Well, three of the nine mountain hotels have not been completed, and the IOC estimate that 97 per cent of the rooms are ready appears to ignore the little things.

    Almost every room is missing something: lightbulbs, TVs, lamps, chairs, curtains, wifi, heat, hot water. Shower curtains are a valuable piece of the future black market here. (One American photographer was simply told, “You will not get a shower curtain.”)

    Based on what Arthur found on Twitter, shower curtains appear to be the least of Olympic-goers' concerns.

    The Detroit Free Press' Jo-Ann Barnas luckily spotted a manhole missing its cover before she fell through like a cartoon character suffering a very human injury:



    All of these issues seem to be taken with a chuckle that keeps the real worry at bay. At least, that's what we gleaned from a couple of tweets from The Chicago Tribune's Stacy St. Clair, who found the usual warning of not drinking the water taken up a notch: Don't use the water at all.

    And, as Arthur reported, tainted water is hardly the only fluid you have to be wary of in at least one hotel.

    For those travelers exhausted from a lack of sleep and struggling with restroom issues, just be glad you aren't a dog.

    Sky News reports the population of stray dogs is being, well, dealt with:

    Thousands of stray dogs are being killed in Sochi so visitors to the Winter Olympics are not bothered by them.

    Until now, the dogs have been living amid the mud and rubble of Olympic construction sites, roaming the streets and snowy mountainsides.

    But as the Games draw near, Sochi authorities have commissioned a company to catch and kill the animals so they do not create a nuisance.

    The news obviously caused a flurry on Twitter. Deadspin's Barry Petchesky shared his thoughts on how other locales dealt with similar issues:

    And so, just days before the Winter Olympics begin, hotels are still being completed, some water isn't safe to use and we have a situation that is at best a funny collection of unfortunate mishaps, delivering inconvenience and little else.

    At worst, there are very real hazards.

    Really, there is no better sign of the sentiment among visitors than this Twitter exchange between Yahoo! Sports' Alan Springer and Charles Robinson:

    Those heading off to Sochi undoubtedly feel the trepidation that comes with any form of travel. When it comes to these specific games, the worries are exasperated thanks to terrorist threats and a wealth of negative reports about the accommodations.

    For the fortunate few who make the trip, enjoying the Olympics might have to come at the expense of a shower curtain—if you can use the water, that is.



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  11. #11
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    Looks miserable, Russia sucks as hosts. With all the threats and politics going on, this might be a good Olympics to sit out.
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  12. #12
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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  13. #13
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus H Christ View Post
    Those damn Russians know how to party!

    Pilsner beer coming out of the taps, hell yeah!


    PS It is kind of funny to think we were at one point worried about Russian world domination.

    They can't even build a hotel or a sewer system that accepts TOILET PAPER!
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  14. #14
    Good Enough cabomiro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    Those damn Russians know how to party!

    Pilsner beer coming out of the taps, hell yeah!


    PS It is kind of funny to think we were at one point worried about Russian world domination.

    They can't even build a hotel or a sewer system that accepts TOILET PAPER!
    And they spent 51 billion dollars on these Olympics. Or 25 billion on olympics and 25 for Putin and his buddies. What a joke
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  15. #15
    Sinner's Swing! Jesus H Christ's Avatar
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    Communal Bathrooms.....get to know your neighbor.



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